Green SmoothieDear Steve: Prior to this cleanse, I did mix my ground flax seed into my fruit smoothies….now I see why I shouldn’t be doing this (viscosity…leading to binding of some/much of the nutrients in there). Where would you include a good dose of flax seed in our diets?
–Lynn Corella

     Dear Lynn: I certainly recognize the omega-3 value of flaxseed especially its high alpha linolenic acid (ALA) content. I do have a bottle of flaxseed oil and vegan oil supplement that contains flaxseed oil. I think that is the best way to get its omega 3 benefits. And as you know, I’ve been heavily promoting its fiber value with you all.

But frankly, my opinion is that flaxseed has been over-hyped in our health food industry. They put it inside too many foods such as “health bars,” crackers, snacks, etc. In my opinion this is misguided because of its mucilage. In some of these snacks you can feel the mucilage coming out while you are chewing. In others, the proportions are small so it is not much of a barrier. But unfortunately, manufacturers use lots of flax because it is an inexpensive ingredient and very popular. People don’t even know that much about it. They just heard that is supposed to be good for you.

     Dear Steve: I started the cleanse today and had plenty of water, the liver cleanse, a fruit smoothie, one green smoothie, a glass of homemade strained hemp milk, and my kombucha…and a double espresso.  I found it hard to drink all that and by dinner time I was totally full and could not drink a second smoothie. Do you think this is a problem?  Should I be forcing myself to drink the second green smoothie? I found the green smoothie to be very filling and could only drink it in sips…I do think I may have used too much garlic. Also, I have to say I was amazed at how full I felt…I cooked dinner for my family and I didn’t even feel like I was missing out.  I had the hemp milk because my husband went out and got me a Vitamix and I was dying to make some kind of “milk.”

Dear Maeve: Our goal is to consume 1 gallon (4 liters) per day. But that is not always possible especially if you are taking most of it in smoothies. I consume about 1.5 quarts of water during the day and I probably make my green smoothie more like the viscosity of a salad dressing than that of a thick soup. Try diluting the consistencies and I’m sure your capacity will increase.

Dear Steve: When I am back on a solid food diet I am wondering what you recommend to eat to keep my protein and calcium levels up?
–Kate K.

     Dear Kate: All the greens will provide an excellent source of calcium and some beans have more protein than chicken. But the best sources of protein on the planet are microalgae spirulina, blue green algae, and chlorella. They are also excellent sources of calcium. Also, don’t forget the macro-algae such as nori, dulse, and hijiki.

Check back in two days for more Q&A!